So I finished my second book on Lean : Lean Software development An Agile Toolkit
(The first one was: Lean from the Trenches:Managing Large-Scale projects with Kanban  )

First the recommendation. Absolutely loved it.   4.5/5

The books gives with a decent history of Lean and throughout relates to the amazing success story of TPS ( Toyota Production System) and other  stories from various industries and organizations. The authors present 7 Lean principles as how they are relevant in Software development. Each principle is discussed in detail along with tools on how to apply those principles to Agile Practices. For me – the biggest takeaway was- that you cant  (or shouldn’t try to) bring in practices from Toyota or for that matter from any other organization and even another department in your company. It’s the principles that you should be looking for. The problem is- when you examine other organizations- what is obvious are the practices they follow. It takes a deliberate effort to lift the covers and understand and appreciate the principle behind those practices.

Google has the much coveted 20% time- where they allow developers to spend 20 % of their time on anything they wish to pursue. Any organization who blindly adopts the process- will not be successful – unless you appreciate and adopt the principle behind the process.
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Last week , couple of people- in different context asked me effectively the same question- what is agile ?.

At one point- I used the analogy of Six blind men and an elephant to answer the question. I hadn’t thought of this analogy till I presented it. But the idea stuck to my mind and I thought- it may be a fun to blog it out.

First the sidebar…

Six blind men and an elephant is a fable from the Indian-subcontinent about six blind men who came across an elephant . They all touch different parts of the elephant to figure out what it is. Each man having touched a different part, drew a different conclusion . The man who touched the trunk- thought it was a snake. The one who touched the tail- thought it was a rope. The one who touched the legs felt it was a tree trunk and so on…

So here goes
Six blind men came across Agile and this is what they said…

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Like last year, here is a reflection on what I did last year and looking forward to the next.
(in no particular order)

Wrote 6 blog posts.

Read a book on lean.Very nice read. Would recommend anyone wanting to know more about Lean

Attended Lean startup conference simulcast  It was a day well spent. The more I read and learn about lean, more fascinated I am.

Participated in startup weekend. It was a blast. Got my adrenaline running like hasn’t happened in many years. Will absolutely do it again.

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